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[paris] Havas Advertising, the world's eighth-largest advertising organization, is merging its media operations with Media Planning, Spain's leading media independent, in an effort to catch up with other holding companies that already have established branded global media specialists. The agency resulting from the merger will operate under the Media Planning brand. Headquartered in Madrid, it claims billings of about $4.6 billion.


Debis seeks agency

[berlin] DaimlerChrysler's Debis unit invited several agencies to pitch for a corporate ad campaign. Debis-a financial, information technology and telecommunications services group-plans to use the campaign within and outside Germany. Invited to pitch are Ammirati Puris Lintas and Springer & Jacoby, both Hamburg, and Zurich-based Weber Hodel Schmid. Springer & Jacoby is Mercedes-Benz's lead agency, while Weber Hodel Schmid handles the Smart car account.

IPG links with Swedish

interactive consultancy

[stockholm] The boards of Interpublic Group of Cos. and interactive consultancy Icon Medialab International struck a broad agreement that includes the U.S. company becoming the Swedish company's biggest shareholder. The agreement, subject to approval by Icon Medialab shareholders, includes a $20 million capital investment by Interpublic in Icon Medialab, giving it an initial equity position of 20%. Interpublic will designate Icon Medialab as "preferred provider" of interactive services to Interpublic's major agencies and companies. Icon Medialab will gain access to Interpublic's global infrastructure. Icon Medialab has more than 400 employees in eight European countries, Asia and Silicon Valley.

Oscars are golden

to Brazil's Rede Globo

[sao paulo] Rede Globo, Brazil's biggest TV station, sold all its ad time during the Academy Awards telecast in less than 24 hours. Interest was high because Brazil's "Central Station" was nominated for best foreign language film and Fernanda Montenegro, the grand dame of Brazilian theater, was nominated for best actress. Neither ended up winning, but an estimated 50 million Brazilians watched the broadcast. Four ad packages costing around $500,000 each were sold to Dutch electronics giant Philips, local mail company Empresa Brasileira de Correios & Telegrafos, Brastemp refrigerators and Dakota Shoes. Smaller $150,000 packages were sold to Bayer, Hewlett-Packard Co., Honda and local beer brand Antarctica.

Toyota debuts Mega Web

theme park in Japan

[tokyo] Toyota made its entry into the world of theme parks with the ribbon-cutting ceremony on its Mega Web automotive entertainment facility and show. The 258,240-square-foot, $130 million complex boasts three pavilions and two rides. Toyota plans to use the theme park, which has 140 cars on display, to market its latest models and build the Toyota brand. The carmaker is expecting about 3 million visitors a year.

P&G Global Business Units

to be based in Geneva

[geneva] Geneva will be the base for operational management of Procter & Gamble Co.'s seven newly created Global Business Units. Most of the 900 executives employed in the GBUs will be relocating from Belgium, Germany and the U.K. Geneva already is home to P&G's Middle East, Africa and general export operation. Last September, P&G said it would change its organizational structure to reflect the global nature of its business and create GBUs to assume day-to-day management responsibility for its seven core product sectors. The new Geneva center, due to be ready by fall 2000, will cost around $50 million.

News Corp. opens

office in Beijing

[beijing] News Corp. opened a representative office in Beijing. It will be headed by Laurie Smith, formerly director of China business development for News Corp. News Corp.'s investments in China includes the Star TV network and the Star TV joint venture Phoenix Satellite TV, which currently broadcasts as the Phoenix Chinese Channel and the Phoenix Movie Channel. The Phoenix Chinese Channel reaches more than 45 million households.

Xerox printers help

create their own ads

[toronto] Xerox Canada is launching a campaign for its Digital Printing Systems products that will be making front-page news for the next two months. Xerox plans to post the daily front page of The Globe & Mail on outdoor boards around Toronto in time to greet people on their way to work. The newspaper will send a disk of its front page, finished at 1:30 a.m. each day, to Xerox's printers, which will produce outdoor ads within 2 hours. The outdoor creative will then be delivered to two companies that control the sites chosen for the campaign; the copy will be posted daily on the boards between 5:30 a.m. and 6:30 a.m. The campaign demonstrates Xerox's ability to produce images quickly and how responsive outdoor advertising can be. Additional print ads will appear in

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